Presence is a key element in Ben Vine’s work: presence understood as keeping one’s mind in the present moment but also understood as the physical space we occupy. Being fully present in the here and now connects us to the world around us and makes our interactions with others more meaningful. Ben Vine’s portraits bring these two aspects of presence together in a body of work that aims to transport the viewer away from the gallery space by opening windows into other realities.
Street portraiture has fascinating social connotations. The act of walking up to a complete stranger and asking for permission to photograph them is bizarre to say the very least, but then so is having one’s portrait taken. When we sit for a portrait our mind immediately triggers two opposite and contradictory behaviors: on the one hand we wish to look good, calm and relaxed; we try to project what we would like to be perceived as, on the other hand we want to hide our weaknesses, fears and insecurities. Yet in this game of lies, in which we project certain things and hide others, people often turn out to be transparent, and both their aspirations and insecurities surface in a subtle and intangible way, creating a portrait that reveals the sitter’s character.
Abstract Bodies, White Lab, Madrid 2022
I'll be your mirror, Valid Foto Gallery, Barcelona 2020
Revela'T analogue photography festival
C.A.L.L.E. Lavapiés Street Art Festival (Jury award)
Larger than Life, Paratissima Torino (Production award)
I shot Myself, Paratissima Torino
Self Centred, Galería Madismad
Almost there, Walden Madrid
Motion Photography Prize, Saatchi Gallery
White Box New York
Hybrid Festival, Galería Gotelé Madrid
Generación 2006, La Casa Encendida